Important things to avoid for Spring Break

By Lindsay Orlov

MCT
MCT

In the midst of chilling winds, early sunsets and infinite snow storms, one beacon of hope shines for college students across the nation: Spring Break. That time when down jackets and ugly, salt-stained boots can be exchanged for bathing suits and flip-flops, when homework can be forgotten (or at least ignored), when freedom and youth reign supreme – that is what awaits us in one month, when the vacation week begins. However, the glories of spring break are often diminished or lost due to completely avoidable errors. Here are some things to avoid when planning for your epic spring break.

Procrastination

This point is coming first because it’s the most important point on the list. Any trip, no matter how simple the logistics, can be ruined by procrastinating. Yeah, that Caribbean cruise is an awesome idea – but it’s already almost March, and all of the cheap tickets are gone. Want to backpack across Europe? Too bad the plane tickets will set you back a thousand bucks because you waited until the weekend before to buy them. Plan your trip as early as humanly possible.

Inviting too many people

While inviting your entire hallway on your road trip to Cancun might sound like an awesome idea, it is, in fact, a recipe for disaster. The more people involved in a trip, the more difficult it is to plan things as a group. If you’ve already committed to a large group, try to keep things flexible enough so that everyone stays happy; otherwise, try for a smallish group of people you know you’ll have a fun time with.

Forgetting to look up local laws of your destination

Some things that are illegal here in Massachusetts may very well be legal in whatever state or country you’ll be spending Spring Break. For example, many other states allow alcohol to be sold in grocery stores and gas stations. On the other end of that spectrum, things that are legal (or decriminalized) here in Mass might be illegal elsewhere, with the potential for severe legal repercussions. Luckily, any information needed about local laws is probably easily obtainable on the internet.

Underestimating transportation

The easiest way to shut down an awesome plan for spring break is to leave transportation as the last item to figure out. Imagine the scene: you’ve found a cheap hotel in a great neighborhood with easy beach access and clubs everywhere – just south of San Diego. All seven people in your group are excited, and then the realization hits: plane tickets are ridiculously expensive, and there’s only one four-door sedan available for use between the seven of you.  Make your plans based on transportation, not the other way around.

Obsessing over the details

Yes, it’s important to make sure the logistics of your trip are figured out in order to avoid being stranded in West Virginia with no gas and dead cell phones. However, once those logistics are figured out, try not to spend all of your time poring over pictures of whatever tropical destination you’ve picked out. Trust me, it will only make the weather outside seem colder and the time between now and March 11 seem longer.

Assuming that you have to travel (far) to enjoy spring break.

It’s true that classic spring breaks involve warmer climates than a New England winter, but the beach isn’t for everyone. Visiting a nearby city can also make for a great vacation, as can staying home and catching up on backlogged Dexter seasons on your Netflix instant queue. Staying closer to home will definitely help you save money, and you might run into an opportunity to make some money too.

With these tips in mind, let the countdown begin – 24 days until the blissful, warm-weather, homework-free shenanigans commence (but who’s counting?).

Lindsay Orlov can be reached at [email protected]